Sunday, July 12, 2009

CVGS Surname List and Ahnentafel Collection

Once in awhile, a researcher in another place does a search for an ancestor and finds one or more names in the Ahnentafel reports submitted by CVGS members.

There are at least 15 ahnentafels on the CVGS website at That is the surname index list - click on a letter and then on a surname to see the ahnentafel with that surname. The ahnentafels have first and last names in them, so a search for the name will find the match.

CVGS received an email come in on Saturday from a person who found a match in one of the ahnentafels. It turns out that she is a third cousin of one of our members. She also happens to be a matrilineal descendant of a purported Native American ancestor of my member colleague. They are already in contact as a result of the CVGS Ahnentafels and will, hopefully, help each other out. If they have the mitochondrial DNA test done, it will benefit both of them, and several other cousins too.

CVGS does not get many matches from these ahnentafels, probably because there are so few posted. They are not difficult to make with genealogy software (except for Family Tree Maker, which won't make a clean ahnentafel list!), and they are text files so they are easy to add to the web site. Gary, the CVGS Webmaster, has a neat indexing program to create the Surname index that leads to a given Ahnentafel. Just think how many people we could connect if we had a hundred ahnentafels, or, better yet, a thousand ahnentafels, online.

It's great to see the CVGS web site, and the effort to create and publish the ahnentafels online, pay off with cousin connections.

Does the CVGS surname List have one of your ancestral surnames? Check it out! Does your genealogy society collect ahnentafels and post them online? If not, why not? If there were more of them online, then more cousin connections could be found.

1 comment:

gsgenealogy said...

Hi Randy,

Neat idea to post these. Forwarded your post to Pam Journey with the SDGS library as s suggestion for a future project for our society